Now is the time to focus on account rounding with life insurance policies. No matter if you specialize in commercial insurance or personal lines, life insurance has never been more important to your customers. The COVID crisis makes this a prime time to sell life insurance policies to current customers and new customers. Mortality is at the front of our minds, society-wide, due to the pandemic.
Don’t miss out on an opportunity to increase your portfolio and your customer’s loyalty, and follow these strategies to add life insurance to your offerings.
Selling life insurance is easier now
Let’s face it, nobody likes to think they are going to die. In fact, that mentality is one of the largest barriers to selling life insurance.
That said, hundreds of thousands of people are passing away from COVID-19 and the disease is front-and-center in the media and in the minds of your customers.
Since COVID has made life insurance a hot topic (albeit an uncomfortable one), this is the right time to sell life insurance to existing customers and to add it to the conversation when selling new customers.
Reach out to learn your customer’s needs
Proactively talk to your current customers. Call them. Find out how they’re doing through this difficult time. Be a resource quarterback.
The COVID crisis is a natural topic from which to transition into life insurance options. Don’t forget that you’re selling peace-of-mind, something that is in short supply right now.
Train your producers to assume that every customer wants life insurance.
If you’re selling property and casualty, such as homeowners or auto insurance, it’s a natural transition to say something like,
“This homeowner’s coverage will cover the value of the home in the event of a catastrophe, but it won’t cover loss-of-income and pain and suffering if the unthinkable happens, and a family member dies. Let’s add this coverage to the overall package.”
“If you get into a bad car accident, this auto policy will cover your liability, plus the value of your car and expenses for medical care in the case of injuries. However, if you die, your auto policy doesn’t cover the lost-income and pain-and-suffering. We should add that to your coverage.”
With commercial customers, we need to be selling key-person policies.
“We’ve covered your business in the case that an employee is hurt, your business’s property is damaged or stolen, someone is hurt in a car accident with a company vehicle, your product injures someone, and if someone just randomly sues your company. But what if you, your partner, or another critical team member suddenly dies? It happens. What will happen to your business? If it will take money to recover, then let’s add a key-man policy.”
If you’re not carrying life insurance lines, now is the time to get access to those lines. Members of One Agents Alliance have access to life insurance lines that pay excellent commissions and profit-sharing. And let’s not forget that the commissions for life insurance are paid up-front in the first year, which can help you make up for the loss of other types of business.
Take Time to Find the Best Option for Each Customer
Is premium affordability a concern?
Personal and business budgets are under stress right now. Price is likely to be an objection.
However, if you already manage all of the customer’s insurance, you might be able to rearrange the overall coverage blend, based on their current needs, to be able to fit a life insurance policy into the budget.
"Train your producers to assume that every customer wants life insurance."
This requires that you take the time to really understand how their situation has changed since the crisis began. If they are overinsured due to changes in their situation, then adjust, leaving some premium budget available for that important life insurance coverage.
This is another reason why account rounding is so important for independent insurance agencies. When you manage all of the customer’s policies, it’s much easier to custom-tailor the coverage so that the customer is getting exactly the coverage that they need for the lowest premium expense.
Consider it as an investment
We all know that life insurance shouldn’t be sold as an investment under most circumstances. That said, there are situations in which life insurance can be a good vehicle to accumulate cash.
Universal policies can be written in a variety of ways with greater or lesser returns based on the insured’s risk tolerance. If your customer chooses a policy with guaranteed cash flows with a guaranteed interest rate over 2%, because of the tax shielding capabilities of life insurance they will realize about 50% more. In today’s low-interest environment where CD rates are typically under .5%, the life insurance option is an attractive plan.
Interest rates are expected to remain low for the next several years, so life insurance as a cash retention and growth tool may be of interest to both personal and commercial clients.
Add Life Insurance to Your Marketing & Processes
Make life insurance a priority in your marketing materials.
When potential customers visit your agency’s website, is it obvious to them that you can help them with life insurance? Do they know that you can bring them the peace-of-mind that comes with life insurance?
Can your producers easily cross-sell life insurance policies? Is your agency management system set up to handle life policies?
If not, it’s time to get to work.
Get life insurance for yourself
If you have life insurance, this is a great moment to sell yourself a replacement policy. It’s quick and easy, and if you’re a member of SIAA you could get extra discounts.
If you write yourself a replacement 10 year term policy on $1 million dollars of coverage, you could reduce your own premium by 75%, and your commissions will pay for the first year’s premium.
Always keen on helping others make their dreams come true, Tony and his team have helped independent agents grow into more than 250 independent agencies. This has made OAA the number one ranked Strategic Master Agency of SIAA for the last 5 years, and one of Oklahoma's 25 Best Companies to Work for.
Tony loves to share his knowledge, insight and wisdom through his bestselling books as well as in free mediums including podcasts and blogs.
Tony and his family are members of Crossings Community Church, and he is very active in community initiatives: he’s chairman of It’s My Community Initiative, Inc., a nonprofit working with disadvantaged people in Oklahoma City; and chairman of the Oklahoma Board of Juvenile Affairs., and he has served through many other organizations including the Salvation Army, Last Frontier Council of the Boy Scouts of America, and the Rotary Club.
In his spare time, Tony enjoys time with his family. He’s also an active outdoorsman and instrument-rated commercial pilot.